Sunday, January 29, 2017

The meaning of suffering

In the depths of our soul there is a secret and sacred place where the seeds of rebirth lie awaiting. 

In Greek mythology Persephone is abducted into the underworld where for three months out of the year she rules as its queen. 

Persephone's journey is the symbolic death of our naive ego. The ego of our youth, the ego that is tied to the demands of the society, to the responsibilities of family, to the aspirations for a career. It is the ego we carry for half of our life. 

Then our soul calls us, beckons us,  and if we continue to turn a deaf ear abducts us, often forcefully, into the dark underworld. Sometimes we call this world depression or mental illness. Sometimes it shows up as an inexplicable physical illness. 
Hope dims as we recede ever deeper into darkness and suffering.

And yet it is in this dark underworld that the seeds of our mature femininity or masculinity lie waiting for us. Suffering can be the crucible where our personality acquires character. In finding the meaning of our suffering we discover empathy, gratitude and a deepening of emotions that makes life sparkle anew. 

Suffering can be a deep well of meaning. 
It can be harmful,yes, but it can also be helpful.
A killer maybe, or possibly a savior, if we can manage to create a framework to understand it.

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